Quick Reaction: Heat 117, Raptors 105

A good first half ends in disapointment. Kyle looks good, at least.

8 mins read
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Pascal Siakam
Pascal Siakam demonstrated promise as the number one scoring option for the Raptors with 22 points against the Miami Heat (Photo by: Ashley Landis/Getty Images)

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MIA Heat 117 Final
Box Score
105 TOR Raptors

A-
P. Siakam28 MIN, 14 PTS, 9 REB, 3 AST, 1 STL, 5-15 FG, 4-7 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -4 +/-

Siakam was impressive from beyond the arc, and he really has been all preseason. He was also great defensively, taking the Bam Adebayo matchup and holding him to just 13 points on 4-7 shooting. I’d like to see him get to the rim more, though, but we are all in preseason form.

C-
O. Anunoby22 MIN, 6 PTS, 0 REB, 1 AST, 2 STL, 2-4 FG, 2-4 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 3 TO, -4 +/-

Anunoby’s handle and balance were both shaaaaaky tonight, but it might have just been a one-off. Surprisingly, Nurse closed the half with Terence Davis II instead of OG at the three spot, which might have been a wake-up call to OG because he wasn’t really letting his presence be felt.

C+
F. VanVleet23 MIN, 7 PTS, 3 REB, 7 AST, 0 STL, 3-11 FG, 0-7 3FG, 1-1 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, 0 +/-

VanVleet loves to shoot, I’ll say that much. He did have 7 assists too, which is nice. I think the Raptors are putting the ball in his hands to help him develop that part of the game, which is fine in the preseason and early season, but the ball should be in Lowry or Siakam’s hands when it matters.

A+
K. Lowry27 MIN, 25 PTS, 0 REB, 3 AST, 2 STL, 7-14 FG, 6-10 3FG, 5-6 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -5 +/-

LOWRY IS THE ONLY ONE WHO DESERVES AN A+! He was great, as usual. It was nice to see Baynes create room for Lowry to maneuver around picks and pull up from beyond the arc, going 6-10 there. He was great but the team needs way more organization.

B-
A. Baynes18 MIN, 4 PTS, 7 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 2-6 FG, 0-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, 1 +/-

Meh. Baynes did all the little things asked of him tonight, but if he’s not going to hit shots or dramatically affect the game defensively, how useful can he be? I need to see him be more of a rim-protector with positioning and help-side defence to really earn more trust.

B
C. Boucher18 MIN, 11 PTS, 1 REB, 0 AST, 1 STL, 4-7 FG, 3-4 3FG, 0-0 FT, 2 BLK, 1 TO, -14 +/-

Boucher had a really encouraging first half. It wasn’t just that he was hitting threes; it was also his rim-protection, court coverage and lack of mistakes. However, he made a few mistakes defensively in the second half, and Nurse isn’t going to trust him if he keeps doing that.

D-
T. Davis16 MIN, 5 PTS, 4 REB, 1 AST, 2 STL, 2-7 FG, 0-4 3FG, 1-2 FT, 0 BLK, 4 TO, -11 +/-

Aside from his ongoing court case being a reason he shouldn’t play, Davis just plays with his head down and it doesn’t seem to fit the Raptors’ style at times. He isn’t a cerebral player, and instead usually looks to the rim to score. Today he missed his teammates and had 4 turnovers so, ya, D-.

B+
D. Bembry16 MIN, 0 PTS, 4 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 0-1 FG, 0-1 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -13 +/-

I like Bembry, but I agree with some of y’all on Twitter who have pointed out that Flynn would be a better point guard for the bench unit. Bembry replicates a lot of what Powell can do, though, which is nice given how inconsistent Powell can be.

D+
N. Powell14 MIN, 9 PTS, 2 REB, 2 AST, 0 STL, 2-5 FG, 0-2 3FG, 5-8 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -12 +/-

Speaking of inconsistent Powell, he was bad tonight. If this team is gonna have enough punch offensively, Powell needs to be as good and consistent as he was last season. If not, they could be in trouble (or he could, at least).

C-
M. Thomas14 MIN, 3 PTS, 0 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 1-4 FG, 1-4 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -8 +/-

Got abused on the defensive end in the first half and wasn’t hitting his threes, so ya, meh.

B
M. Flynn12 MIN, 5 PTS, 2 REB, 5 AST, 1 STL, 1-4 FG, 1-3 3FG, 2-2 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, -4 +/-

He’s aggressive but I love his game even when he’s not knocking down shots. Always seems to make the right read and, importantly, he makes it quickly. More minutes, plz.

B-
A. Len9 MIN, 2 PTS, 3 REB, 0 AST, 1 STL, 1-2 FG, 0-1 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 3 +/-

Solid back up five but with the way the Raptors want to play this season, and with all the guards on their roster, I don’t see Len getting much PT.

A
Y. Watanabe8 MIN, 6 PTS, 3 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 2-4 FG, 2-3 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 3 +/-

Watanabe was great and might have just secured himself a roster spot. At 6-foot-9, Watanabe is incredibly agile and smooth for his size, and he has a nice looking stroke.

B+
P. Watson4 MIN, 6 PTS, 0 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 2-4 FG, 2-4 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 4 +/-

He hit some threes and gives them size at the guard position. More minutes, plz.

C-
Nick Nurse

He lost bad and the Heat were without their best player so that’s a problem, preseason be damned.

Things We Saw

  1. The Raptors did not look ready to play in the regular season. Most teams don’t, but if the Raptors are going to surprise teams by jumping ahead in the standings early like they usually do, they have a lot to get organized very quickly. The defense was good for the most part but sometimes just gave up open threes and the offense looked horrible unless the ball was in Lowry’s hands. Fix up, men.
  2. Lowry and Watanabe are my Watan-All-Stars for the Raptors. They both played really well. So did Siakam, who impressed me defensively. Outside of those three, though, it was an unimpressive showing. I am growing more pessimistic by the day because of their inability to get to the rim and their lack of dependable big men.
  3. Nurse closed the first half with Davis instead of OG and had Bembry play point guard off the bench instead of Flynn. I question those decisions, but it is the preseason and so it’s time for experimentation. However, I think Flynn makes more sense than Davis as a rotation piece, so I hope we see that sooner than later.

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